For years, Floyd “Money” Mayweather (44-0-0, 26 KOs) has made it clear he isn’t a fan of mixed martial arts. He wasn’t even impressed with former middleweight champion Anderson Silva’s historic run, stating earlier during the month that he’d never even heard of the man most consider to be the greatest fighter in the history of mixed martial arts.
During the August issue of Inked, UFC commentator Joe Rogan used the opportunity to remind Mayweather that even though he’s boxing’s pound-for-pound king, he wouldn’t have much of a chance against even the lower-tier fighters in MMA. Rogan took things even further, stating Money didn’t even have what it takes to hold his own against an average collegiate wrestler.
“Floyd Mayweather would get killed by an average college wrestler,” Rogan said (per MMAMania.com). “There would be no competition. If you took Floyd Mayweather today and made him fight against your average college wrestler, that college wrestler is going to shoot on him, pick him up, drop him on his head, and knock him out. There’s nothing that Floyd can do about it. He’s going to get knocked out by getting slammed on his head. A judo guy would do the same thing to him. A jujitsu guy would strangle him, no question about it.”
While it’s rather obvious Mayweather wouldn’t have much of a chance against any decent grappler, most probably aren’t aware of the fact that Money is actually familiar with wrestling’s basics. For a boxer, Mayweather handles himself well in the clinch, properly utilizing the appropriate hooks whenever he gets tied up. That was apparent during his previous fight against Robert Guerrero as he easily nullified the stronger challenger whenever he tried to rough Floyd up inside.
If Andre Berto had a better understanding of how the clinch worked, he probably would have fared better during his tilt against Guerrero, which he lost via unanimous decision, as “The Ghost” did a lot of damage from there.
Obviously, given the fact boxers typically spend most of their training time working on their hands while mixed martial artists have a more diverse set of fighting skills, most world-class boxers wouldn’t have much of a chance against even lower-tier MMA fighters.
That doesn’t mean every boxer who decides to cross over to mixed martial arts will suffer the same fate as James Toney did during his MMA debut against Randy Couture at UFC 118, losing via arm-triangle during the first round, never getting the opportunity to mount any form of offense during the fight.
If one of boxing’s young stars like 22 year-old Saul “Canelo” Alvarez — who is scheduled to fight Mayweather on Sept. 14 — decided to cross over to MMA and is committed to learning the grappling arts, it’s highly likely he would excel. The work ethic, drive, and dedication is already there, so it’s only a matter of learning enough grappling to force opponents to play his game.
Of course, that would never happen since it makes no financial sense whatsoever as MMA’s stars don’t make anything close to the amount of money their counterparts in boxing make. Like the Mayweather clan likes to say, “If it doesn’t make money, it doesn’t make sense.”